Victorinox Backpack Review
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I can’t be the only one who’s tired of backpacks falling apart. Sometimes I only get a year and a half of extensive use out of mine before it basically disintegrates.
In my search for something more long-lasting, I came across Victorinox backpacks. What I found was a promising range of products that seem capable of withstanding some pretty harsh use.
In this Victorinox backpack review, I’ll share whether this first impression turned out to be accurate.
The Pros and Cons of Victorinox Backpacks
Victorinox is one of those classic brands everybody’s heard of. Their multi-tools are so beloved that the term “like a Swiss Army knife” has become part of the English lexicon, used in reference to someone or something immensely useful.
For the most part, Victorinox Swiss Army backpacks offer a level of utility in line with these expectations. They’re comfortable, built to last, and come in a slew of color and design options.
While backpacks from Victorinox aren’t cheap, they’re well worth considering if you’re tired of having to constantly replace cheaper bags.
Although the company has a reputation for producing military and camping gear throughout history, its modern backpacks appear more suited towards urban commuters than rural explorers.
One of the best examples of this is Victorinox’s Altmont 3.0 Flapover Laptop Backpack. It’s stylish and ruggedly built yet looks more at home on the subway than in the mud.
Shoppers looking for something decidedly feminine might not find it with Victorinox but, other than that, there’s something for everyone within their line.
Why Should You Buy a Victorinox Backpack?
Victorinox backpacks are worth considering if you want something casual yet durable from a well-known brand. While their products can be somewhat costly, they still fly under the radar compared to luxury options from the likes of Coach, Banana Republic, and Lululemon.
Customer Service & Buying Experience
Victorinox’s overwhelmingly positive reviews online tell the story of a very reliable and trusted brand. A big part of this is their involvement in the customer service process.
While the occasional quality control issue is inevitable with any company, Victorinox backpack buyers have the benefit of working directly with the company to resolve warranty claims.
Many other backpack companies I’ve dealt with hire a third party to handle warranty issues. This can lead to some pretty frustrating lapses in communication, which is why I always appreciate seeing a brand handle things on their own.
Victorinox’s backpacks represent good value. Cheaper backpacks tend to have thin and flimsy straps, whereas even the products in Victorinox’s lower range have nicely-padded ones.
At the higher end of Victorinox’s range, build quality is about as good as it gets. These products are reassuringly thick and made from textured polyester as opposed to the thin nylon on cheaper backpacks.
Another thing that makes Victorinox’s backpacks worth considering is the variety. In addition to conventional options, there are Victorinox wheeled backpacks and convertible side bags. Plus, all of these products come in a staggering array of colors and sizes, meaning there’s something for just about everybody.
One last key positive worth mentioning is that Victorinox’s backpacks offer a great number of storage compartments. I appreciate this because it means I don’t have to stuff sharp objects like keys and pens into the same compartment as my laptop, which is common with options from other brands.
Made for Urban Travelers
As hinted at earlier, Victorinox’s ideal customer is the urban traveler with a sporty streak. Save for a few options in their professional range, most of Victorinox’s backpacks are far from formal-looking. Some even look like they belong on a cyclist’s back.
This shouldn’t be a problem if you go to work in jeans and a t-shirt but most of these backpacks will look out of place in business-casual settings or anything more formal than that. We’ll discuss Victorinox’s downsides more in the next section but that was worth mentioning here.
Is Anything Bad About Victorinox Backpacks?
While Victorinox products are stylish, they’re not necessarily ideal for people who care about keeping up with the latest trends. I’d look at their backpacks more like tools that happen to look nice.
Backpacks from Victorinox are also priced a bit higher than more generic ones you’ll see in stores like Walmart. This corresponds with their elevated level of utility. As a result, I’d describe Victorinox backpacks as being geared more towards college students and working professionals as opposed to elementary or high school kids.
Lastly, I would have loved to see more Victorinox rolling backpacks. They have a couple of options but these are nowhere near as varied as their conventional backpacks.
These are just minor complaints; I didn’t come across anything overwhelmingly negative concerning Victorinox backpacks, which is also reflected in their reviews.
Victorinox Backpack Reviews
The brand’s reviews on Amazon are overwhelmingly positive.
Here are a few words of praise from customers who bought the Victorinox’s Altmont 3.0 Flapover Laptop Backpack.
As you can see, people find the backpack to be spacious and generously compartmentalized. It also ages well, which is something I found consistent throughout Victorinox’s line.
Our Top-Rated Products
Now that you have a solid overview of Victorinox’s value proposition, let’s take a look at some of their most popular backpacks.
Type: Laptop backpack
Dimensions: 11.8 x 16.9 x 3.9 inches
Weight: 1.76 pounds
I’d rank this as Victorinox’s best backpack for a number of reasons. For one, while it’s arguably their most stylish option, it doesn’t sacrifice on quality.
The Victorinox Altmont 3.0 Laptop Backpack is made from thick synthetic ballistic nylon. This, combined with its large size and substantial padding, makes it feel very reassuring.
A Good Commuter’s Backpack
I found the backpack more than spacious enough for commuting back and forth to work. It’s large enough to fit a 15-inch laptop, your lunch, and some other miscellaneous items. If you’re a student who carries a lot of textbooks, though, you might want to consider one of Victorinox’s other options; this bag doesn’t really have enough space for that.
As mentioned earlier, the Victorinox Altmont 3.0 is one of the brand’s best-looking backpacks. Its flapover design resembles products from designer companies like Loewe. This feature gives the bag a utilitarian yet urban look.
Your color options (black and black/navy blue) are quite versatile, too. People who like backpacks that fly under the radar will appreciate Victorinox’s restraint.
All in all, the Victorinox Altmont 3.0 is ideal for commuters who want something durable, simple, and stylish. It’s also worth considering if you dress semi-formally but prefer a backpack to a briefcase or side bag.
Type: Laptop backpack
Dimensions: 7 x 19 x 15 inches
Weight: 2.4 pounds
The Victorinox Trooper backpack is unabashedly casual. If that’s what you’re looking for, it’s a good all-rounder.
Nice Travel Features
The Victorinox Trooper backpack has a webbing strap that allows you to slide it over the handle of your wheeled luggage.
As someone who travels a lot, I wish more backpacks had this feature. Carrying a backpack, no matter how well-padded, for long periods of time can destroy your posture. It’s much easier to combine it with your luggage.
Big Enough For A Two-Week Holiday
It’s hard to imagine anyone running out of space when using this backpack. Even after placing a 16-inch laptop in the dedicated compartment, you’re left with plenty of space for other items.
In fact, a light packer could easily get away with taking this backpack on a two-week trip. It could also work well for commuters who carry a lot of items daily (i.e. students with several textbooks).
As mentioned earlier, this backpack is definitely casual, befitting of its place in what Victorinox calls the Vx Sport Collection.
That said, it’s not brightly colored with bold accents like you see with many sporty backpacks. Rather, it’s very subdued. People looking for a versatile bag will appreciate this. It looks as appropriate in the locker room as it does in the classroom.
Type: Laptop backpack
Dimensions: 9.1 x 18.5 x 13 inches
Weight: 2.3 pounds
Taking a step up in terms of price and quality, the Victorinox Vertical Zip Laptop Backpack is the company’s best option for those who don’t mind spending a little more.
The backpack is made from thick polyester that feels soft to the touch. Speaking of feel, out of all the options mentioned so far, it offers what I’d consider to be the most comfortable experience. The front is nicely curved while the back is broad and padded enough to help evenly distribute weight. This is very important given how much this bag can hold.
There aren’t many demographics this bag would be unsuitable for. It’s capable of holding a 17-inch computer, notebooks, and much more, which makes it a strong contender for both students and business travelers. It also strikes a good balance between casual and formal; I’d have no problem taking it to a business conference or the gym.
The vertical zip function is also well-integrated. It doesn’t dominate the entire front of the backpack. Rather, it’s there if you need it (i.e. for carrying an umbrella or yoga mat) but easy to ignore if you don’t.
Now, if you want something you can drag through the mud while camping, the Victorinox Trooper is probably a better pick. For day-to-day work/school use, however, the Victorinox Vertical Zip Laptop Backpack is one of the best options out there.
Type: Laptop backpack
Dimensions: 5 x 16 x 11 inches
Weight: 1.8 pounds
Lastly, let’s take a look at the Victorinox Victoria Harmony Convertible Backpack. Why “convertible” you might ask? Well, with this product Victorinox is offering the convenience of both a backpack and a shoulder tote.
While the previously-mentioned bags are stylish unisex options, this backpack was undoubtedly designed with women in mind.
Surprisingly Simple Design
Victorinox is known for its very utilitarian and masculine products. As such, it’s interesting to see them produce something as stripped down and feminine as this convertible backpack.
You still get the build quality and features (most notably a padded compartment sized for a 15-inch laptop) you’d expect from Victorinox. It just comes in a prettier package than we’re used to seeing from the brand.
This makes it a good option for consumers who want to fly even further under the radar than something like the Altmont 3.0 makes possible.
A Good Carry-On Bag
The Victorinox Convertible Backpack for Women is compact. If you use the laptop and tablet compartments as intended, there isn’t much room for anything else beyond a few miscellaneous items.
As a result, this product may prove most useful to those who need a carry-on bag capable of holding their passport, laptop, and tablet. It’s even small enough to qualify as a “personal item” if you need to pair it with a larger carry-on.
Another nice travel feature is the rear sleeve. This slides nicely over the handle of your wheeled luggage.
More Comfortable Than You’d Expect
Convertible backpacks aren’t known for their comfort. Looking at options from popular brands, you often get the sense the designers set out to create purses and then slapped some thin “straps” on at the last minute.
This Victorinox backpack is a bit different. No, the straps aren’t fully padded like you’ll find on the Vertical Zip option but they’re still 2-3 times thicker than what you’d find on most convertible backpacks. This makes it much more convenient to carry around.
Victorinox’s backpacks are pretty much what you’d expect from the company behind the famous Swiss Army knives. They’re reliable, built to last, and offer plenty of utility.
Although they’re priced a bit higher than products from generic brands, Victorinox backpacks are well worth considering if you’re tired of having cheaper bags fall apart in short order. Click here to check out our overall best pick from the brand.